When I talk about the Munchkins and their amazing exploits, people frequently say, “They sound like children.” I reply, “At our house, they are the children.” Sometimes people remark—as though it’s a novel concept—that the Munchkins seem to have quite different personalities. If someone doesn’t believe dogs have distinct personalities, they've met very few dogs.
Ivan and Dasa are fairly far apart on the spectrum. When they were younger and more energetic, where they ran and under what circumstances, said a lot about their personalities. For example, if I dropped a pot or pan, something that produced a great clang and clatter when it fell, Dasa would run upstairs and hide under the futon bed in my office, waiting a certain interval before coming out, just in case the menace took its time leaving.
Ivan would immediately run toward the noise to see if the mishap involved food falling within reach. One day I forgot the laws of physics, specifically that pesky gravity rule, and attempted to balance a cookie sheet on too small a sliver of counter. Ivan was sleeping on our bed upstairs at the other end of the house, and he still managed to appear in the kitchen about the time the second end of the cookie sheet hit the floor.
Dasa has grown much braver over the years, and I marvel at her courage, but her nature continues to be more sweetly agreeable than Ivan’s. Ivan still runs toward the noise, and he’s still convinced the world revolves around him. He needs more cajoling than Dasa before he decides to go along with radical plans such as going out in the rain or sharing a parent’s lap on the couch. He roodles insistently when he wants food or decides we should all be herded into the living room for some snuggle time.
Although they've slowed with age, they are still distinctly their own magical selves.